All posts in Morton Games

Dream Mile in Colour!

Thanks to the brilliant work of Rob Cross Herb Elliott’s 1958 World Mile Record in Santry comes alive in full colour. Enjoy!

Herb Elliott (no. 11) sits in the train on route to a New World Record 6/8/1958

And there’s even more! Rob has colourised race footage: https://twitter.com/RobCross247/status/1301973836959756290

Albie Thomas’ 2nd World Record was 62 years ago

Today we celebrate yet another milestone in the life of Clonliffe Harriers and Morton Stadium. The famous 1958 Sports was a two day affair. Herb Elliott had set a World Mile Record on August 6th. The following day, and a month after he had set a World 3 Mile Record in the stadium the great Albie Thomas (AUS) was at it again. 62 years ago today.

Start of 2 Mile 06/08/58

August 7th 1958 dawned and day 2 of the ‘August International Sports’.    The feature event on the programme was the 2 mile open before an estimated attendance of 8,000 people. Herb Elliott true to the agreement he had reached with Albie Thomas agreed to pace the 2 Mile race. The first mile was reached in four minutes 22 seconds, Elliott led the field with Thomas on his shoulder. Thomas powered on to set his 2nd World Record 8.32.0

Elliott leads, Albie Thomas and Frank White

Albie Thomas said:

When I heard the mile time I said to myself bang goes our hopes of a record, but I decided to have a go.   It was tough going and in the second quarter of the last mile I felt like turning it in.   Then came that wonderful Dublin cheer.   I felt I was running for the crowd as much as for myself and I just ran as hard as I possibly could.  When I heard I had actually beaten the record I could hardly believe it.   Imagine I ran the last mile in four minutes 11 seconds’.

It was 62 years ago today!

On this day all of 62 years ago Australia’s Albie Thomas set the very first World Record in the then Clonliffe Harriers Stadium, Santry (now Morton Stadium), July 9th 1958. The ‘Summer International Sports’  featured Santry’s first world record when before an attendance of 7000 spectators Albie set a three mile world record of 13:11.8 .

In 2008 Albie fifty years later recalled: ‘…. It was only with about two laps to go that there was a huge roar from the crowd and Dave Power was yelling ‘go you can break the world record!’ and that was the only indication I had – I definitely hadn’t gone into the race to break a world record.   It was completely unplanned’.

July 9th, 1958 World 3 Mile Record

Albie is very fondly remembered by Clonliffe Harriers with the Albie Thomas Memorial race in Morton Games and we had the pleasure of Albie’s company a couple of years before his death when he visited the stadium to mark the 50th anniversary of that record. Since his passing Ablie’s wife Nola, his daughter Robyn and her family have been our guests, most recently in 2018 to mark the 60th anniversary.

July 2008, Albie visits Santry for 50th Anniversary

Today we say G’day to all our Aussie friends on this special day.

Morton Games cancelled due to Covid-19 pandemic

The 2020 edition of Morton Games has regrettably been postponed until 2021. Morton Games was scheduled to take place in the Morton Stadium, Santry on Friday July 10th, however the organising committees has taken the difficult decision to hold off on this year’s events in the light of the current uncertainties surrounding the Covid – 19 pandemic.

The Meet Director of Morton Games, Noel Guiden said: “We felt it important to make an early decision in the interest of our stakeholders, sponsors, volunteers and most importantly our Morton Games athletes. Of course, the health of all is of paramount importance and on that front there can be no compromise”.

With the Cork City Sports (July 7th) also cancelled Athletics Ireland CEO Hamish Adams has supported the decisions to postpone both events given the current changing situation. He said: “Athletics Ireland have long been supporters of both the Cork City Sports and the Morton Games, and we see both events as real highlights on the athletics calendar. The news will come as a disappointment, but we are in no doubt that the correct decisions have been made and we look forward to even bigger and better events with the BAM Cork City Sports and Morton Games returning in 2021”.

The Meet Director and his team at Morton Games would like to extend our best wishes to all athletes, coaches, fans and their families over the coming weeks and months in what has been and continues to be a difficult time for all.

Clonliffe Harriers/Morton Games is actively looking at the calendar for 2021. The expectation is that Morton Games will likely be held on Friday July 11th, 2021. This of course is subject to finalisation by European Athletics of the international calendar for 2021. Further details of the date of the 2021 Morton Games will be provided in due course.

The 2021 Morton Games will feature all the usual top class international events with top international athletes and Ireland’s best athletes in the lead up to the rescheduled Tokyo Olympic Games and will feature the most famous race in Irish athletics – the Morton Mile along with a full range of supporting races including the Albie Thomas 5000, Loki Sports Men’s 400, Dublin Marathon Women’s 800, Decathlon Women’s 1500 and Athletics Leinster Women’s 100 plus many, many more.

Morton Games returns to Friday night for 2020

The 2020 Morton Games will take place on Friday, July 10 at the Morton Stadium Santry Dublin. With a somewhat more settled calendar for the 2020 season it has meant a return by Morton Games to our traditional July meet, rather then the much later date this year. A warm Friday night in July sitting on the grass banks around the Santry track certainly sounds a much more attractive proposition then was endured in August!

In addition to the returning favourites (the Morton mile, Albie Thomas 5000, 800’s, sprints, javelin and high jump etc.) the earlier date means the return of the famed club juvenile 16 x 100 (mile) mixed relay which for logistical reasons had to be ‘rested’in 2019. It is also planned to hold once again a junior women’s mile race in addition to the junior men’s mile. More details of course as we move forward.

Make a note of the date July 10, 2020 Morton Stadium, Santry from 7 PM. Also we are currently seeking additional sponsors so if you or your company are interested in discussing the opportunities available contact the Meet Director, Noel Guiden 0879599888. Finally the 2020 event web site http://www.mortongames.ie has been launched so check there for updates.

Morton Games on Eurosport TV

Highlights of last Wednesday’s Morton Games from the Morton Stadium Santry can be seen on TV tomorrow (Wednesday the 28th) Eurosport 1 at 6.00pm and also on Eurosport 2 Thursday, August 29 at 7.00am and again at the prime slot of 9.00 p.m. on Thursday night. The show will also be shown a final time on Eurosport 1 again on September 4th.

Morton Games Replay & Photos on line now

To see a full replay of Last Wednesday’s super Morton Games and to view some excellent photos go to www.mortongames.ie. Also highlights coming soon to Eurosports, details when to hand.

Cathal Doyle, Morton Miler by Fintan Stewart.

Wet, Wet, Wet!

Well it had to happen sometime. After a streak of perfect weather on Morton Games night for eight years in succession it came to an end last night in Morton Stadium as strong winds and then an absolute deluge soaked athletes officials and spectators. The conditions unfortunately dictated against the planned fast times but athletes are competitors and all put on an outstanding display of bravery, guts and commitment producing superb competition and close racing all night.

Highlights included a second Morton Mile win from Robert Dominic (USA) in a time of 3.58.90, despite the conditions five athletes manage the magical sub- four. (Clonliffe had two worthy competitors in the Morton Mile: Cathal Doyle 10th 4.02.65 and Eoin Pierce 13th 4.05.40) A truly magnificent win in the Albie Thomas 5000 from Aussie Pat Tiernan who took tumble, including a somersault, after 600 but still managed a 13.28.41 win, magnificent in the conditions. Indeed the conditions for the 5000 were the worst of the night. There was also a very classy women’s 1500 producing a superb race won by last year’s runner-up Elinor Perrier in a time of 4.08.59.

In the sprint events and intriguing men’s 100 which brought 19 athletes to the start line whittled post heats to 10 athletes and then at 8.0 5 PM a superb win by Cordero Gray (USA) in a time of 10.44, again an incredible time into a strong headwind. Second-place was Demek Kemp (USA) with Gavin Smellie (CAN) completing the podium. Phil Healy gave the packed home straight stand something to cheer about as she came off the bend in first place and battled all the way to the finish line just being overhauled by Kiara Parker (USA), Parker winning in 23.94, , again very impressive in the conditions from Healy’s 24.02.

The men’s 400 so local favourite Brian Gregan in his comeback race, unfortunately Gregan’s hamstring played up and he only lasted about 150 m. Obi Igbokwe (USA) was a worthy winner recording a time of 45.95, quite extraordinary in all the circumstances.

The women’s 800 brought the prospect of a Ciara Mageean win and the possibility of a fast time, the pacemaker did an excellent job but the strong headwind put paid to any such notions. Coming off the final bend with Mageean well in contention with anyone of 5 to choose from, in the end it was the fast finishing tall figure of Canada’s Lindsey Butterworth who was strongest down the straight winning in a time of 2.01.33, Olivia Baker (USA) was second with another Canadian Jenna Westaway third. Ireland’s Katie Kirk despite the conditions recorded a season’s best of 2.03.46. The men’s 800 saw Mark English run out of it with 200 to go and although it looked like it was going to be Harun Abda’s day the American was overhauled by fellow American and winner in Cork Isiah Harris, 1.48.20.

The field eventers suffered more than most in the conditions despite this there was an excellent high jump competition down at ‘high jump Hill’one by the second Australian winner of the night Eleanor Patterson (1.89) from Ireland’s Sommer Lecky (1.83) and Amina Smith (USA) 1.83. Lars Timmerman-jetten (NED) through 75.94 in the javelin to retain his Morton title with our two Japanese visitors, Ayumo Ishiyama (72.22) and Gen Naganuma (71.09) in second and third positions. Clonliffe men Stephen Rice was 6th (67.68) with Rory Gunning 7th 66.86 a PB.

An interesting mixed 4 x 400 relay, which is essentially a Netherlands versus Ireland match ended from the off as the Dutch team inexplicably started sans baton and although they finished the race were promptly DQ’d! The junior Miles which got action underway produced a win in the 20 x 20 junior women’s mile for Joanna Loftus (Moy Valley) and in the men’s by Aaron Cullen of the host club Clonliffe Harriers

In all despite the difficulties caused by the weather the event was an outstanding success with all races running precisely to timetable with the Morton mile itself on the stroke of 9 PM. Also it must be said with most of the meet under lights it added enormously to the atmosphere. Clonliffe would like to thank all of our sponsors and supporters, the spectators who braved the conditions and in particular the athletes who make Morton Games what is. We look forward to seeing you all in 2020.

Morton Games latest: Gregan confirmed!

Latested news: Brian Gregan is a confirmed starter for next Wednesday’s Loki 400 at Morton Games. The Clonliffe Harrier will run his first race of the season after recovering from a long-term injury. Gregan last competed in the Morton Games in 2017 when he produced one of the races of his career as he beat a world-class field in a new PB of 45.26 and in the process he was responsible for reviving the fabled ‘Santry Roar’!.

Gregan will face another World class field on Wednesday night which includes Canada’s Graeme Thompson who has had a breakthrough season finishing 4th in the Canadian Championships and recording a 45.67 PB. Thompson is coming all the way from Canada with a target of the world qualifying time. Also confirmed is Obi Igbokwe (USA) who has a 44.94 PB and the 45.06 season’s best, the NCAA 400 finalist only in recent weeks competed in the London Diamond league where he placed 4th. 2018 European finalists Samuel Garcia (ESP) , with a 45.00 PB and Ricardo Dos Santos (POR) 45.14 and 2016 European bronze medalist Liemarvin Bonevacia (NED) are also confirmed.

Linden Hall tops 1500 entries

Diamond league regular Linden Hall (AUS) is the leading entry in the Fingal 1500 at next Wednesday’s Morton Games. Hall who has an outstanding PB of 4.00.86 was a semifinalist at the 2016 Olympic Games and was a 4th place finisher at last year’s Commonwealth Games. Also confirmed is Lauren Johnston (USA), PB 4.04.17, a 2015 world championship semifinalist and a finalist at the recent USA Championships. Last year’s runner-up Elinor Purrier (USA) will look to go one better this time out, on the basis of current form, with a 4.02.34 PB set this season this may be her year.

Also confirmed from the US are Cory McGee, another athlete in fine form this season having recorded a PB of 4.05.90, Katrina Coogan, who won last night’s 3000 at Cork City Sports and Elsa Cranny, PB 4.06.03.

The European challenge will be spearheaded by 2016 and 2018 European championship finalist Martha Freitas (POR), who has a PB of 4.03.99, 2017 European U/23 gold medalists Renee Eykens (BEL) who is moving up from 800 where she has a 2.00.00 best and Ireland’s European U/20 silver medal list Sarah Healy.

Stellar field gathers for Albie Thomas 5000

Albie Thomas, the legendary Australian athlete who set two World Records in Santry in 1958, is remembered at Morton Games with the Albie Thomas Memorial 5000. That race brings many athletes to Dublin in search of the World qualifying time for Doha, with several of Europe’s best athletes in the field.

The Eurpoean list is headed by Mike Foppen (NED) who this year set a PB of 13.25.89, also in the race is the 2019 World Universities champion Jonas Raess (SUI), the 2018 German National 5000 and 10,000 champion Sebastian Hendel, the 2017 World Universities 5000 champion Francois Barrer (FRA) who has a PB of 13.27.69, Sweden’s Suldan Hassan, pb 13.31.35 and Britain’s Sam Atkin pb 13.33.70, and a sub 4 minute miler. Also confirmed are Norwegian athletes Per Svela, pb 13.35.09 and Marius Vedvik 13.29.46.

Europe’s best will battle it out against the pre-race favourite Australia’s Pat Tiernan, the 2016 Rio Olympian has the fastest PB in the field of 13.13.44 and his fellow Australian Harry Summers who this year has ran 27.56.98 for 10,000. Also confirmed is Luc Bruchet (CAN) 13.24.18 and 2019 World University’s 10,000 champion Milton Kekana (RSA).

This may well be the deepest field ever assembled for a 5000 in Ireland with some 10 athletes at 13.35 or faster and in all more than 20 are sub 14! Stadium Record Alert : 13.19.98 looks in peril.

 

 

Friends of Morton Games

Many thanks to all who have committed to becoming a Friend of Morton Games 2019.  This is very much appreciated by Clonliffe Harriers and by the rest of the team involved in Morton Games.  Your support is vital to the success of this year’s Meet and indeed the future success of future Morton Games.

We are pleased to say that matters are coming together very well and the Meet Director is confident that there is going to be an extremely successful night of action in Morton Stadium on August 21st.  As you may have seen the Meet was officially launched at Buswells Hotel in Central Dublin yesterday by the Mayor of Fingal Councillor Eoghan O’Brien amongst others.

Mick Kearney who is the co-ordinator of Friends of Morton Games has issued a reminder that there are still opportunities available to become a Friend of Morton Games.  With the Meet now fourteen days away it is proposed that the Friends of Morton Games will remain open for subscription for another seven days.

Donations of €100, or more if you are feeling generous (!) will secure you becoming a Friend of Morton Games.  Your name will appear as a Friend of Morton Games on the event website, in the event day programme and you will also receive tickets for the big night.

Anyone interested in becoming a Friend of Morton Games is requested to contact Mick Kearney as soon as possible on 0876243843 or by email to kearneymick@msn.com

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